What do you feed your mind?

What do you feed your mind?

The start of a new year is usually a time for reflection. A time to retrospect on the previous year, while making resolutions and drawing up vision boards for the year ahead. In the spirit of looking back, former president Barack Obama recently shared a list of his 2020 best reads. Staring at the list, I tell myself those are way too many books! These are his best reads, by the way, meaning he could have read more. I try to think of how many I managed to read, asking myself, how did he do that? Does he have more hours in a day than the rest of us? The answer comes straight at me- “you could read more if you weren’t spending all that time scrolling through social media. Which brings me to the big question for today- what do you feed your mind on a daily basis?

Efficient people are mindful of what they feed their minds…

Choosing what to put in our minds is fundamental in shaping our realities

There is such a profound power in choosing what to feed your mind. Although time is our most precious asset, our minds are our real assets in changing times. What we put in our minds is fundamental in shaping our realities. What a lot of us don’t realize is that we are extremely visual beings. Long after we have consumed whatever content we consume, it stays lingering in our minds. Conjuring up ideas, notions, and feelings, influencing our talk, walk and behaviour.

Much of what gets attention on social media is vain and trivial. That would explain why gossip blogs thrive more than blogs promoting meaningful content. The engagement on petty or irrelevant issues is always by the thousand as it seems that we have been wired for gratification over edification.

The benefits and pitfalls of Social media

I watched a webinar some time ago on Facebook. It was empowering! A wonderful conversation between two smart ladies. The guest talked about her journey to becoming a counsellor after moving to Canada from Nigeria. She shared such enlightening tips on bravery, the power of having a vision, and the need to have a cheerleader (in her case her husband), just to cite a few of her discussion points. It was a thorough exchange and truly inspirational. The number of views, comments, and shares? Very few.

The very next day, I received videos of two women in what appeared to be an internet fight. They were at each other’s throats, throwing jabs and coming at each other with the most distasteful, vulgar insults you would ever hear! At first, I was very much appalled. Then I was confused as to what was happening. These were not teenagers who did not know any better. They looked to be in their forties hence my confusion. Why were these aunties quarrelling on the internet? why? what did they hope to achieve?

Don’t go down the wrong rabbit hole

My curiosity got the best of me, and I was off to Youtube (one of them mentioned she had a glorified Youtube gossip channel) to get to the bottom of the matter (never mind that I had specifically gotten up early on this particular morning to do something constructive). From watching ten-minute videos of aunties going after each other with their half-baked English, I spent another thirty minutes on Youtube just trying to decipher the reason for the beef.

By the end of the day, I finally got wind of the tales behind the insults. With more videos of these aunties washing each other’s dirty linens in public, thousands and thousands of views, and hundred more shares. I couldn’t help but juxtapose the webinar I mentioned above with the videos of aunties gone wild (let’s call them that for now). It got me pondering, why do we invest more in vain topics? I understand the need to not take ourselves too seriously all the time but this is a trend. What do you feed your mind?

Filter your social media

There is the need to log off of reality every now and then. To tune off from depressing news which seems to be coming hard these days. We all understand the urge to escape, relax, and be entertained. And scrolling requires very little concentration. However, we do ourselves a disservice when we do not pay attention to what we feed our minds.

The videos of the two aunties wilding trended all of that day. With a fraction of my tribe and I, calling each other back to back to make commentaries and guffaw almost as loudly as Jeff Bezos. And at the end of the day, it did have negative effects on us all. We learned to not feed our minds with trivialities.

Garbage in, garbage out

There is this concept in Mathematics and Computer Science- garbage in, garbage out, which in many ways is a reflection of what happens to many of us in this generation. If you continue to feed your mind with content that has no bearing other than to entertain yourself at the moment, the outcome will be evident in your evolution/growth or lack thereof, and your mindset.

Be conscious of the information you absorb

We live in volatile times- with way too much information flooding the internet. There seems to be no time to filter or unsee all the things we come across on the internet. Be intentional about what you consume, and subsequently share. Make it a point NOT to share irrelevant, rather educative, funny, and thought-provoking content.

Be more conscious of the information you absorb. What blogs do you read? How much time do you spend jumping from one social media app to the next? What shows do you watch? What books do you read? Whose opinion do you ask? It has been said that he/she who has your ear has the most influence on you.

The mind is such an extraordinary vessel. If you feed your mind with the right content, there is no telling the things you can achieve. Moreso, healthy educative material often resolves in personal reflection and growth. By considering the thoughts you think, you inherently give yourself a benchmark for measuring improvement. You can only think great thoughts if you feed your mind with great ideas.

Reading is such a healthy habit we should all try to cultivate. Let’s all share a list of our great reads at the end of 2021, if not, at least say what blogs we spent our time on which influenced our lives in a positive way.

Filter what you sonsume... your mind is so powerful, be intentional about what you feed it.
Filter what you consume…

By the way, I am no president Barack, but here are my best reads of 2020. I hope my list pushes someone to feed their mind with great information this year and beyond-

  • The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari  by Robin Sharma
  • The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
  • Trevor Noah’s Born a crime (reread, I’m I weird for doing this?)
  • The richest man in Babylon by George Samuel Clason
  • Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozie Adichie (reread)
  • You are badass by Jen Sincero
  • Michelle Obama’s Becoming (reread)
  • Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki and Sharon Lechter (reread)

What have been your best reads? I am actually looking for a “banger” read to start my year. Please do share in the comments…